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The joy of volunteering

The joy of volunteering

International Volunteer Day was celebrated widely on 5 December and offered many opportunities for RAAFA as an organisation to celebrate its highly valued volunteers and thank them for everything they do. 

And amongst those people celebrated was Secret Harbour couple Jean and Bob Sexton, who were encouraged to volunteer by their daughter Lisa, an Occupational Therapy Assistant (OTA) at McNamara Lodge. 

“Lisa just loves her job and the residents, and when she asked us to come and volunteer at the home we were happy to give it a try,” says Jean, who emigrated to Australia from England, together with husband Bob, in 2008.

“We just love helping out and in fact I think we get even more joy out of it than what we put in, we look forward to going and spending time with the residents, and we love the staff there too, who are just wonderful.”

Up until very recently Jean and Bob would spend all day volunteering at the home on Mondays and Tuesdays, where Jean ran the knitting and crocheting group, Bob played chess and socialised with the residents, and the couple helped with bingo in the afternoons.

And although a recent fall has temporarily stopped the couple’s volunteering activity (poor Jean recently suffered a broken wrist and hip!), the pair are hoping to be back at McNamara Lodge in the new year.

“We were foster carers for children when we were younger and we enjoy helping and caring for others, so for us volunteering comes very naturally,” explains Bob, who says the couple love living in Perth and that Secret Harbour has been a wonderful place to retire after living most of their adult lives in Kent.

“I really enjoy having a laugh with the male residents, reminiscing with them and going on a trip down memory lane.

“Plus a couple of them are really good at chess and they’re enjoying beating me. So much so, that we even have a little competition going now,” he laughs.

tags:  News

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